Afcon 2019: We are not allowing Super Eagles to get distracted – Pascal

Super Eagles team coordinator, Patrick Pascal has stated the Nigeria team will respect the progression of Algeria to the semi-final of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) but they are not afraid of them.

Nigeria will play Algeria at Cairo International Stadium in Egypt on Sunday. The Fennecs defeated Ivory Coast 4-3 on penalties after regulation time had ended in a 1-1 draw at Suez Stadium on Thursday night. Nigeria saw off South Africa 2-1 in Cairo.

“We are glad our opponent in the semi-final of Afcon has been revealed and it is Algeria,” Pascal told Goal.

“We already knew before the encounter that it could either be Ivory Coast or Algeria and at the completion of the game, the Algerians were able to edge them. We respect all the opponents we have faced at the Afcon but we are not afraid of any of them.

“We have faced the same Algerians twice like two years ago and they were unable to beat us in two games. We know that they are now improved a lot but we have also not remained the same since our last game in Algiers.

“We do not expect an easy game but we are hoping to do what is necessary to ensure that we qualify for the final of the competition. We have remained very humble at the ongoing competition and it will be the same approach on Sunday in Cairo.”

The former Eagles utility player noted their immediate task is to ensure they are psychologically and physically ready.

“We have an assignment at hand and it is to tell the players the importance of the semi-final fixture,” he continued.

“It is not that the players do not know the seriousness of the game but we still have to remind them so that they will put their attention to it and not allow anything to distract them at this point. We have come this far and it is possible to win the competition again. We are going to do our best to make Nigerians happy.

“Algeria is a good side but we have our confidence back with the way we beat Cameroon and South Africa.”

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